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Mon, 11 Jan 2016 14:30:28 -0500
Soccer-Greek championship results and standings

By Brian Homewood ZURICH (Reuters) - Lionel Messi reclaimed the FIFA Ballon d'Or award for the world player of the year on Monday, after watching his great rival Cristiano Ronaldo walk off with the prize for the previous two years. The Barcelona and Argentina forward finished ahead of Ronaldo and Brazil forward Neymar as he scooped the award for the fifth time overall, having previously won it four years in a row from 2009 to 2012. Messi helped Barcelona win a Spanish league, cup and Champions League treble plus the Club World Cup and also led Argentina to the Copa America final, where they lost to Chil

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Mon, 11 Jan 2016 14:19:32 -0500
US World Cup winner Carli Lloyd gets FIFA world player award

Lionel Messi has won the FIFA world player of the year award for a record fifth time. Messi ended Cristiano Ronaldo's two-year hold on the Ballon d'Or trophy on Monday to lift soccer's top individual honor. The Barcelona forward regained the prize after his club won five major titles last year, leaving Ronaldo's Real Madrid with nothin

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Mon, 11 Jan 2016 14:04:28 -0500
FIFA Ballon dOr winner Lionel Messi

By Brian Homewood ZURICH (Reuters) - Lionel Messi reclaimed the FIFA Ballon d'Or award for the world player of the year on Monday, after watching his great rival Cristiano Ronaldo walk off with the prize for the previous two years. The Barcelona and Argentina forward finished ahead of Ronaldo and Brazil forward Neymar as he scooped the award for the fifth time overall, having previously won it four years in a row from 2009 to 2012. Messi helped Barcelona win a Spanish league, cup and Champions League treble plus the Club World Cup and also led Argentina to the Copa America final, where they lost to Argentin

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Mon, 11 Jan 2016 14:04:28 -0500
FIFA Ballon dOr winner Lionel Messi

ZURICH (AP) -- United States World Cup-winning captain Carli Lloyd has won the FIFA women's world player of the year award for 201

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Mon, 11 Jan 2016 07:44:36 -0500
Soccer-Arsenal hoping to wrap up Elneny deal this week - Wenger

On her Twitter account, M.I.A. published a letter written in December by PSG deputy CEO Jean-Claude Blanc to her label Universal Music asking ''to cease the broadcasting'' of images showing the PSG jersey and to refrain from using the club's imag

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Sun, 10 Jan 2016 17:33:53 -0500
Soccer-Five-goal Napoli go top after Inter lose at home

Napoli is halfway to its first Serie A title since Diego Maradona led the club to the 1990 championship. There was an FA Cup upset for Premier League side Swansea, which slipped to a humiliating 3-2 defeat to Oxford United of the fourth tier of English footbal

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Sun, 10 Jan 2016 17:19:33 -0500
Sporting Lisbon stays ahead in Portuguese league

Atletico Madrid returned to the top of the Spanish league on Sunday after second-half goals from Antoine Griezmann and Yannick Carrasco secured a 2-0 win against Celta Vigo. Griezmann scored from close range in the 49th minute after a nice exchange of passes with Luciano Vietto, and Carrasco sealed the victory in the 80th after getting past a couple of Celta defenders outside the area. Atletico has 44 points, two more than Barcelona, which beat Granada 4-0 with a hat trick by Lionel Messi on Saturda

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Sun, 10 Jan 2016 11:31:56 -0500
Soccer-Swansea knocked out in first FA Cup giant-killing

Napoli is halfway to its first Serie A title since Diego Maradona led the club to the 1990 championship. Through 19 rounds of the 38-match season, Napoli holds a two-point lead over Inter Milan, which was beaten 1-0 by Sassuolo earlier with a last-minute penalty to surrender the lead. ''We're still not sure what we're capable of,'' Napoli's first-year manager Maurizio Sarri sai

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Sun, 10 Jan 2016 08:59:06 -0500
Sassuolo beats Serie A leader Inter 1-0 with late penalty

Premier League struggler Swansea was humbled in a 3-2 loss at fourth-tier Oxford on Sunday for the first big shock in the third round of the FA Cup. Fifty-four places separate the teams in the English football pyramid and Ecuador winger Jefferson Montero gave an indication of the supposed difference in class by backheeling Swansea into the lead in the 23rd minute. Swansea, which is in the midst of a relegation fight in the Premier League, came unstuck after making 10 changes for the gam

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Sat, 09 Jan 2016 16:50:27 -0500
Soccer-Lazio ruin Fiorentina - hopes of going top

A 1-1 draw between AC Milan and Roma in Serie A on Saturday likely did little to alleviate the pressure on managers Sinisa Mihajlovic and Rudi Garcia. Antonio Rudiger put Roma in front with a volley four minutes in at the Stadio Olimpico and Juraj Kucka equalized early in the second half. Roma remained fifth, five points behind Serie A leader Inter Milan, which hosts Sassuolo on Sunda

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Sat, 09 Jan 2016 16:39:53 -0500
Soccer-Rooney spares United blushes, agony for Eastleigh

Zinedine Zidane's head-coaching career got off to a winning start as Real Madrid defeated Deportivo La Coruna 5-0 in the Spanish league on Saturday. Gareth Bale had a hat trick and Karim Benzema scored twice, including with a back-heel flick. It was a completely different atmosphere compared to when Rafa Benitez was in charg

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Sat, 09 Jan 2016 15:55:40 -0500
Soccer-Ligue 1 summaries

Midfielder Carli Lloyd and defender Becky Sauerbrunn have been chosen captains of the U.S. Women's National Team. The duo was selected Saturday by U.S. coach Jill Ellis. ''Christie and Abby have been phenomenal leaders for this team for a long time, and we are forever grateful for their far-reaching contributions,'' Ellis sai

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Sat, 09 Jan 2016 15:19:15 -0500
Sheikh Salman positions as safe pair of hands in FIFA vote

Arsenal began its FA Cup defense with a 3-1 comeback victory against Sunderland and was joined in the fourth round by Manchester United and Manchester City on Saturday. United labored past Sheffield United 1-0 at Old Trafford, and Manchester City emphatically defeated Norwich 3-0. Also, Premier League side Aston Villa was held to 1-1 at fourth-tier Wycombe, while fifth-tier Eastleigh drew 1-1 with second-division side Bolto

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Sat, 09 Jan 2016 13:07:34 -0500
Soccer-Granada fall under the spell of magical Messi

PARIS (AP) -- Lyon celebrated its first match at its new Stade des Lumieres home with its first French League win in two months, 4-1 over last-place Troyes on Saturda

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Sat, 09 Jan 2016 12:28:17 -0500
Arsenal begins FA Cup defense with 3-1 comeback win

Lionel Messi's first hat trick of the season helped Barcelona beat Granada 4-0 and take a provisional lead of the Spanish league on Saturday. Messi scored twice within the first 15 minutes at the Camp Nou, and added his third in the second half as Barcelona cruised to victory. Neymar closed the scoring lat

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Sat, 09 Jan 2016 09:59:49 -0500
Soccer-Greek championship results and standings

LONDON (AP) -- Aston Villa became the second English Premier League side to fail to beat fourth-tier opposition in the third round of the FA Cup after being held to a 1-1 draw at Wycombe on Saturda

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Sat, 09 Jan 2016 03:36:55 -0500
FIFA ethics judges send written verdict to Blatter, Platini

FIFA's ethics panel said on Saturday it had formally given outgoing President Sepp Blatter and European soccer head Michel Platini the reasons for their eight-year bans from the game, information both men could use in an appeal. The move came too late for Platini who said this week he had abandoned plans to appeal against the ban in time to rejoin the race for the FIFA presidency and withdrew his candidacy. Blatter and Platini were banned last month amid the worst corruption scandal in the history of world soccer's governing bod

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Fri, 08 Jan 2016 18:59:18 -0500
Soccer laws overhauled in attempt to remove inconsistencies

By Simon Evans PANAMA CITY (Reuters) - FIFA presidential candidate Sheikh Salman Bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa said that if he is elected he will examine the role of the U.S law and consulting firms that were hired by the global soccer body in response to a U.S. Department of Justice probe of corruption in the sport. In an interview with Reuters on Friday, Sheikh Salman, president of the Asian Football Confederation and one of five candidates running in the Feb. 26 vote to be the next FIFA president, said a close look was needed because he was not fully convinced FIFA was getting enough out of the relationship. FIFA last year hired U.S. law firm Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan and New York-based crisis and communications adviser Teneo, and the two firms have been working with FIFA's legal and communications staff at its Zurich headquarter

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Fri, 08 Jan 2016 17:39:27 -0500
Soccer-Lowly Exeter hold second-string Liverpool in FA Cup

CHICAGO (AP) -- Goalkeeper David Bingham, defenders Steve Birnbaum and Brandon Vincent, and midfielder Perry Kitchen have been added to the U.S. roster for a training camp ahead of exhibition games against Iceland and Canad

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Fri, 08 Jan 2016 14:32:02 -0500
Soccer-Toure blasts indecent African Player of the Year snub

The New York Red Bulls have signed midfielders Dax McCarty and Felipe to multiyear contract extensions and re-signed defender Damien Perrinelle. The Major League Soccer team announced the deals on Friday without disclosing terms. McCarty was the Red Bulls' captain last season, his fifth with the team and 10th in the leagu

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Fri, 08 Jan 2016 12:33:14 -0500
Messi set to get 5th FIFA best player prize, end Ronaldo run

Paraguayan prosecutors say they have started going through the documents seized during a raid of the headquarters of the South American soccer confederation and will send them to the U.S., which is leading a probe on corruption in soccer. The U.S. Justice Department last year indicted several soccer officials and businessmen in an alleged scheme that involved receiving bribes for commercial rights to Copa America and other tournaments. The men charged include the three last presidents of the CONMEBOL confederation, which has its offices in Asuncion, Paragua

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Fri, 08 Jan 2016 12:31:35 -0500
Soccer-Barca - Alves launches foul-mouthed tirade against media

Lionel Messi is favored to win the FIFA Ballon d'Or on Monday, ending Cristiano Ronaldo's two-year hold on soccer's top individual prize. Messi already has a 4-3 lead in their career duel for the annual FIFA prize but has recently been eclipsed by his great riva

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Fri, 08 Jan 2016 11:15:22 -0500
Van Gaal unconcerned about Guardiola - Premier League plans

Barcelona striker Luis Suarez was suspended Friday for two Copa del Rey matches for insulting rival players. The referee's report for the heated match at Camp Nou that ended 4-1 for Barcelona on Wednesday said Suarez insulted Espanyol players in the tunnel after the match. Referee Juan Martinez Munuera's report states that Suarez told Espanyol's players: ''I am waiting for you, come her

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Fri, 08 Jan 2016 10:48:46 -0500
Soccer-Palermo sign Cristante on loan from Benfica

David Elleray, who formulated the comprehensive revision of the laws, hopes rules will no longer be open to as much interpretation. ''We are trying to help situations which tend to occur very often and are a bit crazy,'' said Elleray, a former English Premier League refere

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Fri, 08 Jan 2016 01:39:33 -0500
Soccer-Sunderland - Allardyce keen to hold on to striker Defoe

Former Lyon boss Alain Perrin is out as the Chinese men's national team coach after slightly less than two years in the job. The Chinese Football Association said in a statement Friday that the Frenchman was departing following discussions between both sides. The statement heaped praise on Perrin for his hard work and strict management style, and for bringing new life to a team that has been a persistent underperforme

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Thu, 07 Jan 2016 21:22:45 -0500
Lower-division farm teams barred from US Open Cup

Michel Platini's dream of becoming the next FIFA president is over. Platini told The Associated Press that he remains determined to overturn the eight-year ban he was handed by FIFA's ethics committee last month, but that the deadline for the Feb. 26 election is too short and renders his candidacy impossible. ''I'm withdrawing from the race for FIFA presidency,'' Platini, the suspended president of European football's governing body UEFA, told the AP in an interview on Thursda

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Thu, 07 Jan 2016 19:28:18 -0500
Paraguay officials raid South American soccer confederation CONMEBOL

ASUNCION, Paraguay (AP) -- Paraguayan authorities raided the headquarters of the South American soccer confederation Thursday in connection to the sprawling FIFA probe being led by U.S. and Swiss prosecutor

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Thu, 07 Jan 2016 17:34:02 -0500
Sporting Kansas City acquires midfielder Davis from Houston

Shortly after LAFC revealed its black-and-dark-gold colors and eye-catching new crest in a gala ceremony, Will Ferrell carried a director's chair onstage and sat down between co-owner Peter Guber and Mayor Eric Garcetti. ''I want in,'' LAFC's 25th and newest co-owner declared. This is a common sentiment in downtown Los Angeles, where the Major League Soccer expansion club is already attracting plenty of attention more than two years before anybody officially kicks a bal

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Thu, 07 Jan 2016 16:48:50 -0500
Home detention for Guatemalan judge charged in FIFA probe

By Nate Raymond NEW YORK (Reuters) - A suspended Guatemalan judge who was arrested last month as part of a U.S. investigation into corruption in soccer's world governing body FIFA won the right to be released from jail on Thursday on a $4 million bond. Héctor Trujillo, 62, was secretary general of the Guatemalan soccer federation and a Constitutional Court judge until his Dec. 4 arrest while aboard a Disney cruise ship docked in Florida. With Trujillo's wife and one of his sons watching in court, U.S. Magistrate Judge Robert Levy in Brooklyn, New York approved the $4 million bond package for Trujillo under which he will be subject to home confinement and electronic monitorin

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Thu, 07 Jan 2016 14:44:27 -0500
Argentina, Uruguay want to co-host 2030 World Cup

Paraguayan state prosecutors on Thursday raided the headquarters of CONMEBOL, South America's soccer confederation, as part of a money laundering investigation, a police official told local radio. Prosecutor Hernán Galeano led Thursday's raid on CONMEBOL's headquarters building on the outskirts of Paraguay's capital, Asuncion, local police official Abel Cañete said in an interview broadcast on radio station Primero de Marz

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Thu, 07 Jan 2016 14:44:27 -0500
Argentina, Uruguay want to co-host 2030 World Cup

Banned European soccer boss president Michel Platini has withdrawn his candidacy from the race for the presidency of soccer's scandal-plagued governing body FIFA, he told French sports daily L'Equipe on Thursday. Platini, the head of European soccer body UEFA, was handed an eight-year ban from the game by along with outgoing FIFA president Sepp Blatter by the federation's independent Ethics Committee on Dec. 2

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Thu, 07 Jan 2016 14:35:01 -0500
Soccer-Argentina, Uruguay want to co-host 2030 World Cup

Argentina and neighboring Uruguay will bid to co-host the 2030 World Cup, Argentine President Mauricio Macri said at a joint news conference on Thursday with Uruguayan leader Tabare Vazquez. "We have decided that our best opportunity is to jointly nominate ourselves as candidates," Macri said during a visit to Colonia, Uruguay. Uruguay hosted and won the first World Cup in 1930, beating Argentina 4-2 in the fina

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Thu, 07 Jan 2016 13:49:22 -0500
Soccer-Platini withdraws candidacy for FIFA presidency

ZURICH (Reuters) - Banned UEFA president Michel Platini has withdrawn his candidacy for the FIFA presidency, he was quoted as saying by French sports daily L'Equipe on Thursday. "I withdraw my candidacy. I can no longer (go through with it). I have neither the time, nor the means to go and see the voters, to meet people, and to fight with others." Platini, the head of European soccer body UEFA, was handed an eight-year ban from the game by FIFA's Ethics Committee on Dec. 21, along with FIFA president Sepp Blatter. He is appealing the decision and insists he has done no wrong. .

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Thu, 07 Jan 2016 13:32:15 -0500
Soccer-Argentina, Uruguay want to co-host 2030 World Cup

PARIS (AP) -- Michel Platini is giving up his bid to become the next FIFA presiden

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Thu, 07 Jan 2016 13:13:18 -0500
Swansea sticks with Curtis until end of season

KANSAS CITY, Kan. (AP) -- Sporting Kansas City has acquired midfielder Brad Davis from the Houston Dynamo in exchange for a second-round pick in 2017, a third-round pick the following year and future considerations. Terms were not disclosed Thursda

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Thu, 07 Jan 2016 08:20:04 -0500
Belgium - Adnan Januzaj returns to Man United from Dortmund

Juergen Klopp arrived at Liverpool in October armed with his megawatt smile and a renowned playing style: The so-called ''Gegenpressen'' approach that was the key to his success in Germany with Borussia Dortmund. Klopp has transferred the physically demanding approach to Anfield and the grueling English soccer calendar, but there's a growing worry that he is running Liverpool's players into the ground amid the team's hectic schedule of Premier League, Europa League and League Cup matches. Liverpool currently has 11 players injured, six with hamstring problem

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Thu, 07 Jan 2016 06:37:59 -0500
Soccer-Watford - Deeney rules out Arsenal move

It's a match that has all the ingredients of a classic FA Cup upset. Exeter's home game against Liverpool on Friday is the pick of the games in the third round of the FA Cup, when the giants of the Premier League join the teams from the lower leagues and non-league in the world's oldest club knockout competition. Liverpool is in the middle of a grueling schedule - it will be the team's sixth game in 19 days - that is taking its toll on the squa

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Thu, 07 Jan 2016 04:42:56 -0500
Soccer-Jermaine Jenas announces retirement from football

FIFA's ethics judges announced on Thursday they had opened formal proceedings against suspended Secretary General Jerome Valcke over alleged corruption involving World Cup ticket sales, one of many scandals now surrounding soccer's governing body. The announcement came after an ethics investigation into the case recommended a nine-year ban for Valcke, former right-hand man to FIFA president Sepp Blatter who himself has been banned for eight years. Valcke, who is suspended pending the final outcome and has denied wrongdoing, has been invited to submit evidence to the panel, FIFA's independent Ethics Committee said in a statemen

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Wed, 06 Jan 2016 18:28:36 -0500
Messi shines as Barcelona beats Espanyol in wild Copa match

The Philadelphia Union fired coach Peter Nowak in 2012 after getting complaints he hazed rookie players by spanking them so hard it hurt his hand, directed them to run 10 miles in warm weather without water, and was dismissive of concussion injuries, according to newly filed court documents. Lawyers for the team and Nowak made filings recently as Nowak tries to convince a federal court to overturn an April 2015 arbitrator's ruling that upheld the dismissal and ordered Nowak to pay the team about $400,000 in legal fees and costs. ''The hazing of rookies, by spanking them, sometimes with a sandal, was completely unacceptable,'' wrote arbitrator Margaret Brogan in Apri

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Wed, 06 Jan 2016 17:06:30 -0500
Jon Patricof to become NYCFC president in March

Romelu Lukaku kept up his hot scoring streak by grabbing a late winner for Everton to beat Manchester City 2-1 in the first leg of their English League Cup semifinal on Wednesday. Lukaku restored Everton's lead in a thrilling second half at Goodison Park, two minutes after substitute Jesus Navas equalized for City on a counterattack led by Sergio Aguero. Defender Ramiro Funes Mori put Everton ahead in first-half injury time when he steered home the rebound after Ross Barkley's shot was parried ou

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Wed, 06 Jan 2016 16:55:04 -0500
Soccer-English League Cup semifinal results

LONDON (AP) -- Former Chelsea team doctor Eva Carneiro has appeared at a tribunal hearing for her constructive dismissal case against the English Premier League champions following a dispute with then-manager Jose Mourinh

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Wed, 06 Jan 2016 16:42:49 -0500
Soccer-Serie A results and standings

Lionel Messi scored two goals and set up two more to lead Barcelona's 4-1 win over crosstown rival Espanyol, which finished a hot-tempered Copa del Rey clash with nine men on Wednesday. Felipe Caicedo grabbed Espanyol a ninth-minute lead at Camp Nou, but Messi hit right back four minutes later. The star forward put the hosts ahead with an unstoppable free kick just before halftime, and assisted Gerard Pique soon after the interva

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Wed, 06 Jan 2016 15:56:24 -0500
Soccer-Portuguese championship results and standings

CHICAGO (AP) -- Clint Dempsey, Kyle Beckerman, Chris Wondolowski, Graham Zusi and Brad Evans were among the veteran players left off Jurgen Klinsmann's training camp roster ahead of exhibition games against Iceland and Canad

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Wed, 06 Jan 2016 14:16:08 -0500
Bilbao rallies for 3-2 win over Villarreal in Copa

NEW YORK (AP) -- Jon Patricof has been hired as president of New York City FC, becoming the third leader of the Major League Soccer team as it heads into its second seaso

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Wed, 06 Jan 2016 12:02:23 -0500
Soccer-Grosskreutz joins Stuttgart after four months in the cold

Four-time defending champion Juventus comfortably swept aside last-place Hellas Verona 3-0 for its eighth straight win in Serie A on Wednesday. Paulo Dybala, Leonardo Bonucci and Simone Zaza scored to move Juventus provisionally level with second-place Inter Milan, which was visiting Empoli later. ''The lads did well to get right back into the league, which is never easy after the holidays,'' Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri sai

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Wed, 06 Jan 2016 11:09:22 -0500
N. American soccer boss agrees extradition to U.S. to face bribery charges-Swiss justice office

Alfredo Hawit, acting head of the confederation which runs soccer in North and Central America and the Caribbean, has agreed to be extradited to the United States to face criminal charges, Swiss authorities said on Wednesday. CONCACAF boss Hawit was arrested at a Zurich hotel on Dec. 3 along with South American football chief Juan Angel Napout, hours before they were due to take part in a meeting on cleaning up soccer's governing body FIFA, which has seen its top executives consumed by scandal. "The U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of New York accuses him of accepting bribes totaling millions of dollars in connection with the sale to various sports marketing firms of marketing rights to football tournaments in Latin America," the Federal Office of Justice said in a statemen

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Wed, 06 Jan 2016 08:38:11 -0500
Column: Want a glimpse of sports future in 2016?

LIVERPOOL, England (AP) -- Juergen Klopp has made midfielder Marko Grujic his first signing as Liverpool manage

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Wed, 06 Jan 2016 08:26:43 -0500
Soccer-Serie A top scorers

Underdogs had their days, plenty of them, in 2015: Leicester City snapping at the heels of England's Premier League giants, Japan beating South Africa at the rugby World Cup, Roberta Vinci derailing Serena Williams' drive for a calendar year Grand Slam. CHAMPS OF EUROPE: Barcelona will become the first Champions League winner to defend the title. The trio scored 75 percent of Barcelona's 180 goals in 201

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Wed, 06 Jan 2016 06:40:59 -0500
Soccer-Brazil boss accused in FIFA scandal returns to work

Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF) head Marco Polo Del Nero returned to work on Wednesday after completing a 45-day leave of absence taken to fight charges he is involved in soccer's wide-ranging corruption scandal, the organization said. Del Nero was charged by U.S. prosecutors on Dec. 3 with participating in schemes designed to solicit and receive millions of dollars in bribes and kickbacks to sell media and marketing rights for soccer tournaments and matches. "I have completed my mission as interim head of the CBF," he said in a video posted on the CBF's website on Tuesday nigh

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Wed, 06 Jan 2016 03:06:11 -0500
Soccer-Palace targeting silverware with FA Cup triumph, says Mutch

FIFA's ethics watchdog on Wednesday extended the suspension of FIFA Secretary General Jerome Valcke, a day after its investigators had recommended an extension and that he also be banned from soccer for nine years over alleged corruption. "The adjudicatory chamber of the ethics committee chaired by Mr Hans-Joachim Eckert has decided to extend the suspension of Mr Jerome Valcke by 45 days, at the request of the investigatory chamber," the ethics body for Zurich-based soccer body FIFA said in a statemen

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